Exploring Watercolor 101

Yep, even you can make magic with watercolor.

Yep, even you can make magic with watercolor.

Look, I get it. You're "not an artist," but you can't stop watching watercolor videos on social media, and your curiosity got the better of you. Welcome! You, my friend, are not the first to wonder if you might be creative after all. I've been there, and 
I made this course just for you.

Exploring Watercolor 101

Scroll on if you're into it.

What if I told you learning to paint majestic sunset skies and quirky illustrations like waffles cones and fireflies was definitely in your wheelhouse... even with no prior experience? 

Hard to believe, but it's 100% true. Those dreams of spending afternoons lost in your creativity, painting your heart out?

They're closer than you think. 

It all depends on how much courage you have to take a chance... and, of course, how good your art teacher is. (I'm really good.)

Finally, a step-by-step roadmap that makes watercolor totally doable.

Let's take a dive into your creativity.

"The journey this course takes you through is wonderful. The skills I learned and art I created blow me away. I never imagined that I would be able to create any kind of art, much less beautiful art. But because of this course, I have a whole wall of art that is mine, and I smile every time I look at it. Now, a little voice inside of me says:
“Maybe I am an artist.” Thank you, Kolbie! What a gift!"

— Sherri W.

"The skills I learned and art I created blow me away."

Believe it or not, I've been in your shoes.

Unlike a lot of other art teachers, I didn't go to art school, and I don't have decades of experience. In fact, until about five years ago, I was pretty sure my artistic skill level maxed out at stick figures.

I used to think I was terrible at art, too.

Now, I'm a full-time artist, author, and online creative educator.

I've taught more than 20,000 students worldwide to love watercolor -- all because one day in February 2016, I had the courage to ask myself: "Wait, why can't I do that?"

Here's my little secret...

Your one-stop-shop from "oh, I'm not an artist" to "why, yes, I did paint that masterpiece!"
I built this course to give you all the tools, tips, and resources you need to make some watercolor magic.


Exploring Watercolor 101

Knowing your materials inside and out makes your art journey so much easier. Module One has both a quick overview and full deep dive of all the tools you'll need to succeed. Whether you're a beginner on a budget, or you're looking to upgrade your art toolkit, I've done all of the research so you don't have to.

Before you can break the rules like an artist... you need to learn them like a pro. Modules Two and Three talk about basic watercolor techniques and color theory, giving you a solid foundation that'll make building up your skills so much steadier. 

Here’s what's inside...

The Right Tools

A Strong Foundation

Module one

Modules two and Three

Module Six is all about learning to play. At this point, all of the "teaching" lessons are over, and now it's your turn to put your skills to the test with over a dozen unique projects and tutorials. From landscapes to waffle cones, mixed media to color mixing, you'll get to spread your wings and truly explore watercolor as a skilled artist.

Projects for Days

Module Six 

The magical thing about art, creativity, and watercolor is how deep the practice really goes. Module Four will take the basic skills you've already learned and build on them to give you even more insightful tools to stretch your skills and expand your perspective. 

Then, we'll take a deeper look at creativity and your journey as an art explorer in Module Five. From chatting about using art for mindfulness and how to navigate the learning gap, to learning my "paint what you see" method and sketching from reference photos, this module will help you move from hesitant student to lifelong creative learner.

Beyond the Basics

Modules four and five


Scroll past watercolor paintings on Instagram and actually know how to paint them

How would it feel to...

Build a portfolio of beautiful paintings you're proud to call your own 



(aka here's what you'll get):

Know your supplies inside and out, so you don't waste any more money or time  


Gain a clear vision for your style and taste as an artist


Have a safe space to feel, play, and connect with your creativity 


The Art Explorer Path

Equipping you with all the basic tools and techniques to confidently create your adventure


Plenty of opportunity for guided, hands-on experience to translate your new skills to real breakthroughs


Tips, tricks, and a path forward to discovering your own creative potential outside your comfort zone


“Kolbie is THE most approachable teacher out there when it comes to watercolor. She breaks down everything you need to know into easy-to-follow lessons and modules.”


discovered her potential


“My 10-year-old son and I have both taken her class, both with limited knowledge of art, and we were able to understand and create something beautiful. She broke it down... to help us feel more confident.”


 made memories with her son


This year has been a rough one. Art can't take away your challenges... but it can give you a safe space to feel and explore.

are you ready to invest in yourself?

“Anyone who wants to relax, gain empowerment, and develop new talents needs to try this course.”

During this stressful year of 2020, I was excited to explore watercolor with Kolbie Blume. Her simple, clear teaching techniques helped me gain confidence and develop a new skill.


Found a solace from her stress

Don't just take my word for it...

“I have purchased a few courses in the past and never felt I got the value for the money I spent. That is not the case with EW101.” 

Kolbie is an excellent teacher. She breaks things down in an easily digestible way that isn't overwhelming. I took the course in summer 2020 during lockdown times, and I learned so many new techniques and how to translate those skills into new paintings.


found a new passion

“I felt uplifted and empowered to improve my creativity for the betterment of myself.”

I recently went to a different art class from someone else for a friend gathering, and I was expecting it to flow as easily, but it did not. Things were articulated much better in Kolbie's class. Looking forward to more!


found her creative power

When you enroll in Exploring Watercolor 101, you'll also gain access to an exclusive online community where you can connect and learn with other students in the class. 

And if you're worried about working through the material without a schedule, I've prepared something fun I've never done before: 

The 6-Week Explorer Challenge is a weekly series inside the group where we'll come together to share our work, ask questions, and dive even deeper! 

Worried you won't make time to really dig in? Looking for some friends to help?

Art Explorers Community
6-Week Explorer Challenge

join our community of creatives

plus, friends from around the world...

There is nothing I believe more strongly than this: 

You are made of creativity, and it is yearning to come out and play.

The truly magical thing about watercolor is that in order to capture its mysterious potential, you need a little chaos + a little guidance -- it's the tension between the two that creates the most luminous, evocative results. 

You and watercolor have a lot in common. As a burgeoning artist, you need a little messy chaos, and you need a little steady guidance to help you see the method to the madness. That's where I come in -- and believe me, I can already see the magic bursting through your seams. 

You are an artist -- you just need a little guidance.

you're in the right place

You might be looking for even more watercolor resources, and I am happy to oblige! As a bonus 'thank-you' for signing up for the course, you'll also get FREE access to my NEW Skillshare class, Watercolor Landscapes for Beginners: How to Paint What You See. 

In this class, I'll take you step-by-step through my process of turning a reference photo into a one-of-a-kind watercolor painting.

Grab your seat and get my new mini course for free!

Watercolor Landscapes for Beginners: How to Paint What You See

...and another one!

...wanna know the secret that made me an artist?

"Natural talent" is overrated, and understanding paintings doesn't have to be a big mystery...

They all start one stroke at a time.

Have a clear idea of what watercolor supplies you need and how to use them -- everything from paint, paper, brushes, and more

Understand the building blocks of watercolor, including color theory, basic strokes, and fundamental painting techniques

Be able to tackle more advanced watercolor painting techniques, like composition theory, using white space, and mastering water control

Explore 30+ art projects to hone your skills and explore new styles, including loose landscapes, Galaxies, ink + watercolor, charming illustrations, colorful patterns, and more!

know how to take your skills out of the course and into your own creative practice, learning to paint from reference photos and more

have the courage and confidence to learn from your "failures" and keep coming back to watercolor again and again for solace, joy, and creativity

By the end of this course, you will...

yes please

"Kolbie is thorough and thoughtful. She is concise and follows up the lessons with practical application. It's very helpful practicing the techniques with the guided exercises. I don't feel myself getting frustrated or feeling like I am not "getting it." And I've been rather pleased with how my projects/practices have turned out!"

— Kristen S.

"If you are debating whether to purchase the course... go for it!"

"I've taken one Skillshare class of hers and learned SO MUCH, that it was a no-brainer purchasing Exploring Watercolor 101!

— Cayla F.

"Literally everything I wish I would've known when I was just starting out."

More about me

In 2016, I tried my hand at art for the first time in 15 years.

In 2018, I created my first Skillshare class, then quit my non-profit communications job to pursue being an artist and online educator full time.

In 2020, I published my first book, Wilderness Watercolor Landscapes.

As of 2021, I have worked with brands like Legion Paper, Arteza, Pilot Pen, TikTok, and more -- and I've taught more than 20,000 people all over the world to take a chance on their creativity. 

Your Biggest Fan + Creative Best Friend


well, hello. i'm

I've been where you are.
That's how I know I can help.

 For most of my life, I had a serious mental block when it came to art. I genuinely believed art wasn't in my skillset -- and, honestly? I was 100% fine with that...

...until I wasn't anymore. At some point, I started to wonder. And yearn. And be a little sad about the fact that art "just wasn't my thing."

That's when I realized what was really stopping me: 

I was afraid that I would never measure up, would never belong as an artist, and everyone would know.

But here's the thing: learning a new creative skill isn't about "measuring up" -- it's about digging deep and connecting with who you are right now, in the messy middle of things. Because the mess is where the magic is.

you have to give yourself permission to make messy, awkward, imperfect art if you want to find the joy.

if i can do it, so can you.

Exploring Watercolor 101 isn't just about learning "the basics" (though there's plenty of that)...

...it's about a-ha! moments...

You can find most everything you need to know about basic watercolor techniques by scouring the Internet... but what's not always there is firsthand knowledge about what it's like to actually learn in the thick of it

I can't tell you how many times I've thought to myself "oooooooohhh, I get it now" or "wow, that was a totally unexpected and useful surprise!" while making a mess with watercolor, and I'm sharing all of those "ah-ha!" moments with you. 

Whether it's throughout the structure of the class or in my actual "ah-ha moments" lesson (yes, I have an entire lesson dedicated to them), you'll walk away from this course with a very full art toolkit.

...And charting a path forward so you won't always need a tutorial...

Don't get me wrong -- I LOVE tutorials. They're so helpful for learning and relaxing and just having fun when you're creating...

...but what happens when you think you might be brave enough to venture out on your own? 

Module Five of Exploring Watercolor 101 is all about what to do when you want to stretch your wings a bit and take a dive into your own imagination. We'll talk about navigating "the learning gap," important mindset shifts, using mindfulness as a creative tool, and how to use your favorite tutorials as a jumping off point to finding your own style. 

We'll also have hands-on lessons, with my "paint what you see" sketching method and learning to break down a reference photo. Whenever you're ready, you'll have what you need to continue your art journey confidently.

...and exploring the kind of art that you like to make, one project at a time...

One thing that frustrates me to no end with a lot of courses is the lack of practice material -- that's why Exploring Watercolor 101 is PACKED with projects so you can put your new skills to work (in the most fun way).

With 30+ project lessons, I want you not only to see how basic watercolor techniques work in real life, but also to experience how they can translate to so many different styles and subjects. 

This course is about exploring watercolor, right? 

As you pay attention to what pieces and techniques were your favorite and made you feel the most magical, you'll have a much clearer idea of what kind of artist you want to be right now and how to implement that in your creative practice.

Exploring your creativity is a lifelong practice -- that's why you'll get lifetime access to Exploring Watercolor 101.

This is a course I'll keep updating and improving, and you'll get access to all of it -- without paying a cent more (even if the price increases). 

Plus, you'll get an invite to my exclusive Art Explorers Facebook group, where you can share your work and connect with creatives across the world. 

Great news!

At this point, you might want to jump in... but you're nervous about spending money on a course when there are TONS of free watercolor resources out there. Isn't that, like, a waste of money?

I totally get it, and here's the truth: You don't need this course if you want to learn watercolor. (You remember that I'm self-taught, right?) You could Google techniques, find one-off YouTube tutorials, even piece together a bunch of smaller, less expensive courses and structure a learning system all on your own. And, in time, you could probably figure some things out.

But, here's something I want you to consider: Isn't your creativity -- your dreams, your joy, your longings, your desire for community and a little guidance -- worth investing in? Wouldn't you rather spend your time actually learning + creating?

I can't promise to teach you 100% unique things you won't find anywhere else. (Anyone who does promise that is lying to you.) 

But I can promise to take you on a fun, inspiring, joy-filled journey that will give you the tools to explore watercolor and art for years to come.

But do I really need to invest in a course to learn watercolor?

because you're worth it, my friend

Making your creativity a priority...

Embracing yourself as a real artist...

Gaining the tools & techniques that will take your art skills even further...

Building a creative practice that will help make everyday challenges a little easier to bear...

Letting go of perfectionism and discovering the power in making wild, messy art...

Feeling more connected to yourself, your sense of wonder, and your creativity...

Exploring your own unique artistic style...

If you want 2022 to be the year you finally commit to...

...join us!


I'm confident you'll love it. But just in case, you have a whole week to explore and make sure it's a good fit. If you're not into it, I'll refund your money, no questions asked.

As a fellow human who cares about making sound investments, I understand that it's hard to jump in when you're not sure it's right for you. That's why I'm giving you 7 days to take a look around, try out some tutorials, and see for yourself. I've poured my heart and soul into this course, and I'm so confident that it'll give you the tools you need to become a passionate watercolor artist. But if you're just not feeling it within the 7-day window, shoot me an email at kolbie@thiswritingdesk.com.

money back 


EW101     for you if:

You're ready to say "Yes" to creative living

you don't want to learn watercolor basics

You enjoy learning in video format

you have no interest in art

you're looking for a fun, relaxing, self-paced journey into watercolor

It's probably      for you if:

You'd rather not learn more about finding confidence and clarity with creativity



It's probably         for you if...

Let's go on a 

watercolor adventure 

SO... what do you say?

How long is the course?

8+ hours of video content, with each video less than 30 minutes (most are between 10-15 minutes). Perfect for learning watercolor during lunch breaks and nap time!

Frequently Asked Questions

how long can i access it?

You'll have lifetime access to the course AND all of the many updates I'll make over the next few years! Now is the perfect time to jump in before I raise the price.

What watercolor techniques will we cover specifically?

EW101 includes: wet-on-dry, wet-on-wet, glazing, intro to color theory and color harmonies, water control, luminosity, layering, composition, using a reference photo, mixed-media, and more!

Do the videos have captions?

Absolutely -- every video lesson has a closed-caption option.

Do i need fancy supplies?

Nope! I prefer to use artist-grade supplies, but you can absolutely succeed in this course without breaking the bank on the fancy stuff. We'll talk more about that in Module One.

How is this different from your Skillshare classes and book?

Every project in the class is unique to this course. If you’ve taken any of my Skillshare classes, there may be some minor overlap (all watercolor artists use the same basic techniques), but they don’t cover everything. Also, my book and most of my Skillshare classes mainly focus on loose watercolor landscapes, whereas EW101 covers a more broad array of subjects. 

Will this course cover how to sell art?

This class is mainly an art instruction course and will not cover business topics. 

What's your refund policy?

I put my whole heart and soul into this course, and truly believe it’ll give you the best start on your watercolor journey. That said, if you begin taking the course and feel like it’s not the best fit, I have a 7-day no-questions-asked refund policy. Just shoot me an email at kolbie@thiswritingdesk.com.

shoot me an email

Honestly, I completely understand. You still need to figure out if it's right for you. I'm here, friend, and I'd love to answer your questions.

Still on the fence?

Follow along for loads of art lessons, video tutorials, and tips on how to make creativity work for you.


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